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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know this will get moved but just for the Aussies:
Collected my machine Friday. Sunday went for 200k drive up onto tablelands. Long twisty roads up and down the range with better behaved roads on the tablelands. Good 1st workout.

PROS: Very comfortable seating and steering position. Plenty support for driver and passenger around all those corners.

Great clear view from driver's seat. Easy to glance left/back to check for traffic before turning or changing lanes.

Good acceleration. Easy to overtake. Great 3rd gear. Engine noise quiet until you open her up and then a smile inducing growl.

Good looking instruments. Excellent night lighting with day time backlighting for main clock/audio and trip meters. Easy to see when going in and out of shady stretches of road. Safe and easy to use steering wheel audio controls.

Steering is superb. Cornering is clean and precise. Road feedback is spot on.

Clutch pedal is on firm side but not intollerable. Gear changes are like silk. As good as a Honda.

Brakes take up firmly without grabbing. They do not feel soft as some reviews report. Also, no scoring and no squeeling. Very satisfying.

Suspension is taut and steady around corners. Very little if any sway. Could not hear any noise to speak of despite the odd minor pot-hole.

Interior finish and exterior fit is above average. Door closing is solid. The whole effect is as if for a much more expensive car. The sporty and youthful look is much more exciting in reality than the pamphlets.

Easy entry and exit for young and old.

CONS:Some road noise on certain high granite chip content bitchumen. Otherwise quieter than the Civic.

Rear brake dust. A little too much on the rear wheels after only 200k. I use a lot of engine compression and am light on the brakes. Could be just a design fault with dust blowing out onto wheels instead of down onto road. Don't think there is anything fundamentally wrong with brakes.

Brake and clutch pedals too small. Can feel them through the sole of your shoe. Danger of slipping off the side of one if you don't have the pedal right in the middle of your foot. Bigger after market pedal rubbers will fix though.

Interior finish is easy to mark.

Summary: Zoom zoom says it all! Fabulous bang for the buck. A leader in the field. Be happy........ You made the right choice!! :D
 

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Hey Zoomer, couldn't agree more with the points you made. I have noticed that when my shoes are a bit wet, it is very easy to slip off the clutch. Also the black interior is very easy to mark.

I haven't noticed any grooving in the back rotors but have noticed quite a bit of brake dust forming.

That aside, I absolutely love my new car, and am totally satisfied with my choice.
 

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I largely agree with Zoomer's thoughts on the new Mazda3 (I have an SP23 manual hatch) but the often-reported clunk in the front suspension has me really concerned. It seems to happen when accelerating hard over small potholes or road irregularities, or cornering even at low speed over gaps between the road and the gutter, ie, when turning into a driveway.

This is an extremely loud thud which doesn't sound like a rubber bump stop. It sounds like something has fallen off the car or gone through the strut mount. There is no way this is a safe/normal thing, despite my local mazda service centre dismissing it with a shrug at the 1000km service. They couldn't find anything wrong.

Has anybody experienced this or heard of any reports from other owners?
 

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I recall a lot of reviews complaining about the lack of steering feedback on this car. Anyone agree? How do you really define steering feedback anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
zimmerDn: An electronic signal is produced by the electronic speedometer. This is read by the engine management system (a computer chip) and a road speed signal is produced. This signal is fed into the electronically-controlled hydraulic steering system. This allows varying steering effort depending on road speed and road type. In other words instead of the steering feeling effortless in all conditions (leading you to for instance take a corner to fast), the steering adjusts and gives you the feel of having to put some effort into cornering.
Believe me, the Mazda3 has great steering feedback.
 

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Excellant review Zoomer, I agree on all points.

Cant wait to see some pics. I just got back from a two day trip to Brisbane and went to 2 different dealres to try to see a Maxx Sport Sedan. Only one dealer had one, a Velocity Red, very nice but I thnk the Titanium Grey with tinted windows will look hot. You are getting tint done or have already arent you ?

Lancair
 

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I fail to understand how engine speed sensing would be better than road speed. Generally you want less power assisting at High speeds regardless of engine speed and more power assist at 10km/h in a car park.

Lancair
 

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Its hydrolic verus electro-hydrolic. I wonder how the other one feels. :p
 
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